Declutter to Downsize
Are you moving house? Are you downsizing. You may be in the situation that you just cannot take everything when you move so some things will need to go. So now is the perfect time to start the decluttering process, ready for your downsized home.
If you declutter early, the move will go so much smother. You won’t arrive at the new house with a ton on boxes that just won’t fit everywhere. You also won’t need to purchase additional storage for those excess items.
Here are some tips to help make the declutter and downsizing process easier.
Start Decluttering Early
Moving is stressful and emotions are high during this process. Take the time to carefully sort through your belongings early. As a professional organiser who has helped move hundreds and hundreds of clients, my number one tip is to start decluttering early. Don’t start the week before you move. I would recommend starting at least 3 months before you are going to move.
Don’t Forget to Downsize Your Kitchen
Moving to a smaller kitchen can be a challenge. Sometimes, just looking at the quantity of kitchen cabinets, appliances and dishes that you have will make you think downsizing is impossible. However, it is quite possible to move to a smaller home and a small kitchen and still have everything you need. As a professional organizer. We help many clients to do just that. It does take some organising and it takes time, but it can be done. For example, let’s say you have 8 coffee cups with your dinner set, 4 favourite mugs, several souvenir mugs and then theirs those other mugs that don’t match anything and just seem to accumulate. You need to ask yourself ‘when was the last time you served coffee to 22 people?’ Get my point.
Keep Only One
Many common kitchen items often have duplicates. Purge down to one colander, one set of measuring cups, one spatula, one set of tongs, and so forth. You will be amazed at just how many duplicate items you have.
Keep wall hangings, pictures and knick-knacks minimal. Only keep your favourite ones.
Sell Your Stuff – Don’t throw anything in the garbage
Recycle, reuse, sell and donate instead. As tempting and easy as it is to pitch wire hangers, old clothes and furnishings, be environmentally responsible and find a home for everything.
- For a large number of items, you might consider having a garage sale.
- If you have time before the move, you can sell items on eBay.
- Used designer clothing can be resold in consignment shops. These stores can be found in your local business directory. Be sure to shop around though, some stores offer better rates than others.
- Donate items to the Salvo’s or your favorite charity store.
Declutter Every Cabinet, Shelf and Wardrobe
Only put back the things you couldn’t live well without. You might have to be ruthless but there is no point in keeping items that you cannot display at your new home.
Measure Your Furniture
You will need to know how your furniture will (or won’t) fit into your new space – particularly large items such as your sofa, sidetable and your bed – so measure everything. This will often determine which items will and won’t fit and which items you need to get rid of.
Assess Your New Storage Areas
How many times have you moved into a new place only to realize – too late – that you have overestimated the amount of storage space you actually have. While you’re getting room measurements, make sure you properly assess your new storage situation. Will you have fewer kitchen cupboards? If so, how many. Then think about your current home and the number of cupboards that you have. Often you only see your new home for 15 minutes at an open for inspection and you don’t think to take notes of these sorts of things. I don’t know how many times clients have told me “Oh the place has got lots of storage” only to get there and find it doesn’t. How many wardrobes will you have? How many hanging sections does the wardrobe have? Often clients get caught out on this one also.
When you are decluttering to downsize you have to be a bit more ruthless than a normal declutter. Start early your decluttering, plan ahead and tackle one room at a time.
Until next time, happy organsing.
Natalie Morey, Professional Organiser